Friday, January 7, 2011

Colonial Adventures and casualties

Ed of Two Hour Wargames recently explained that I was doing casualties incorrectly.  The side suffering casualties rolls a Received Casualty test for each casualty they received, and if this causes Runaways, they are also considered casualties, who then each take a Received Casualties test.  Ed calls this the Spiral of Death!

So I ran a test of 1 Zulu band attacking 1 British platoon.  The Zulu band is Rep 5 with a Rep 4 leader, Ferocious, and shielded, in a mob.  The Brits are Rep 5 with a Rep 5 leader, and stationed behind a wall, in close order.  Both are 20 man units.  Sorry, no photos, since one unit on one unit doesn't lend itself to good photos.

This a bit dry, but really important to understanding the power of the Europeans in Colonial Adventures.  I will use RC to stand for the Received Casualty test, since it shows up so frequently.

Turn 1:  British 3, Zulu 5
The Zulus move to 23" from the British.
The British volley fire 8d6, causing 1 hit.
The Zulu passes 2d6 RC test - Carry On.
At the end of the turn the British have 20 men, Zulu 19.

Turn 2:  British 4, Zulu 6
The British volley fire 8d6, causing 2 hits, and going low on ammo.  They send a man back for ammo.
The Zulu pass both RC's with 2d6 - Carry on.
British 20 men, Zulu 17

Turn 3: British 6, Zulu 1
Zulu move to 11" from British, who pass Test of Will with 2d6, fire 7d6, and miss. 
The Zulu pass 2d6 on Received Fire and charge.
The British pass 2d6 on Being Charged. and volley 7d6, causing 2 hits, and going low on ammo again.
Zulu 15 men
The Zulu pass 1d6 on both casualties, causing a total of 4 to Runaway.  They pass all 4 of these tests on 2d6, Carry On.
The British have not yet been contacted and whittled the Zulu down to 11 men.
The Zulu close to melee.  Both sides lose 1 man, leaving the British with 20 men and the Zulu with 10 men.
In the melee the Zulu roll 7d6, passing 4, and the British 6d6 (+1 for the wall), passing 3, so they lose a casualty.  The Zulu pass their with 2d6, and the British pass both of theirs with 2d6.
British 18 men, Zulu 10 men.

Turn 4:  British 2 Zulu 3
The Zulu continue the melee.  British 17 men Zulu 9
The Zulu roll 7d6, passing 1.  The British roll 6d6, passing 1.  Its a wash.  Both pass 2d6 on RC.
Although the British unit outnumbers the Zulu 2:1, they don't outnumber them 2:1 in figures in contact, since they are lining the wall.
The British, being in close order, back up 4", and volley fire 6d6 (2 low on ammo markers), causing 1 hit.
British 17 men, Zulu 8
Zulu pass 2d6 RC, but it's considered 1d6 since the firers outnumber them 2:1.  1 in 6 (1) Runaway
Zulu 7 men.  The same result applies to each Runaway.  The Zulu have reached the point in which the remaining figures Runaway 1 by 1, because they can no longer count as passing 2d6 on the Received Casualty test.
So in 4 turns the British have removed the Zulu unit, with the loss of only 3 figures out of 20.

This is a critical change in the way I was doing the Received Casualty check.  Doing it incorrectly, the European fire (hitting only on a 1)was puny, and caused little effect on the charging Tribals.  Now the Europeans have a chance to reduce the Tribals before they can reach the bayonets to half their strength.  It will be even more effective against non-Ferocious Tribals.

We will do one more Zulu game this weekend, and I'll give a full report with photos.


  1. Ken,

    It's good that Ed "straightened" you out. :^)
    This result is more in keeping with what I have read actually happened. Of course when 2 or 3 Zulu units gang up on 1 British unit, then things will definitely get more interesting!


  2. Ken, glad you posted this -I too was doing it wrong but with additional errors to boot.

    Thanks Ken.


  3. It seemed like an important "clarification" to me. What is it about assume...;-)